Plan ahead, leave early when driving in bad weather

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OKLAHOMA CITY - As Oklahomans prepare for the next round of winter weather, our storm trackers are also gearing up for the change.

When weather hits on a weekday, many people feel like they do not have another option but to go in to work.

NewsChannel 4 storm trackers are very familiar with driving around treacherous roads.

Chief Meteorologist Mike Morgan said, "Speed is really not your friend."

Marc Dillard is a NewsChannel 4 veteran who has seen a lot of accidents on the roads.

Dillard said, "Some people get out there and are pretty cavalier about their driving thinking, 'Oh, it's just a little snow.' And, well, that's the first guy that goes into the wall on the highway."

Dillard not only helps those who slide off the road, but says he's been there himself.

He said, "It was just icy enough, just a little bit of ice to send me spinning around."

It was an experience and lesson he'll never forget.

Avoiding icy roads is best but some people must brave the weather.

If you have to get out in the winter mix, give yourself extra time and plan ahead.

Mike Morgan said, "The important thing is to know your path of where you have to go, what you think that path will look like based on what we are saying on NewsChannel 4, what's going on outside right now and then give yourself plenty of time."

If you know a frequent trouble spot, plan around it.

When you reach intersections, hit your brakes early and slowly.

Dillard said, "You don't want to just slam on the brakes because if you catch ice, you're likely going to slide into someone."

With freezing temperatures in the forecast for a few days, it is essential to take it easy.

Mike Morgan said, "There will not be a lot of slush. It will go briefly to slush over to really solid, slick ice."

As we always say, if you don't have to be out, stay home.

Dillard said, "We sound like a broken record when we say that over and over but it's really true."

Our winter driving experts also remind everyone to be prepared by packing a few blankets and snacks.

Also, make sure you have a cell phone and a car charger so you can call for help if you get stuck or end up off the road.

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